Kathryn Toppan and Sean Lent, of Bad Little Brewing, were both teachers in the Portland-area school system when they purchased a summer camp in Machias and fell in love with the Downeast area. As they looked to the future, they decided they wanted to bring a bit of what they loved about the Portland brewery scene with them to Machias full time. They began working with SBDC advisors throughout our network to get their brewery and restaurant open resulting in an incredible amount of teamwork. As new roadblocks popped up, different business advisors stepped in to help navigate the next stage.
The pair began their journey with CEI’s Women’s Business Center, which helped them get started with their business plan. They also got connected with Peter Harriman, Maine SBDC Center Director and Business Advisor. Peter dove into their business plan and financial projections to help refine and ready it to approach banks. When the time came, Peter connected them to Jared Tapley, Maine SBDC at NMDC, who worked with the NMDC loan office and Machias Savings Bank to secure the financing necessary to open.
Toppan and Lent are now in the process of renovating the iconic Clark Perry House in Machias, a stunning historic house that is more than 150 years old. They’ll be able to run their restaurant, brewery, and AirBNB rentals all from one location and plan to open in 2022.